The fact that you have to place it on the ground before summoning it makes it less reactive and intuitive to use as I see it. Spirit Link is one of the strongest (if not the strongest) cooldown available and being able to use it on the spot as damage is inbound only underlines this.
To me personally it’s a massive loss not being able to just drop it at your feet while still paying full attention to health bars and their fluctuation. It will move more towards the proactive design where I am a massive fan of the reactive part (which I feel is the current model for SLT). One way to get around this would be to make a macro function to drop it at your feet if you want to, and then simply have modifiers to determine if you need to place it at a distance or drop it at your feet.
I can’t count the amount of times, where I’ve instinctively dropped the totem after an unexpected hit and saved either a fellow healer, a tank or a dps from sudden death. This where I feel it will lose impact/value.
I am going to miss the ability to ‘double-dip’ from this ability too. I have enjoyed abusing it by first equalizing the range and then secondly the melee group, or using it on two marks for mythic Archimonde. It will straight up lose value to me because of TP being scrapped from the game.
Due to this I find it difficult to see this change in particular, as anything near quality-of-life. Not only will are we limited to a single spot for SLT, but we will also lose the ability to relocate all other totems as well.
The only scenario where this will be a ‘step-up’ is when you are in range with nobody around, (as in no beneficial effect of dropping SLT on you) but you have to drop it on tanks/melee to give damage reduction or save tanks.
I don’t mind scrapping some of the useless spells (looking at you shields) but I hate to see something like this go, it added finesse to all totems.